Investigation by Dartmouth detective, other agencies leads to guilty plea of New Bedford woman

Mar 30, 2023

A New Bedford woman who was involved in a fentanyl drug trafficking organization that was investigated by a Dartmouth police detective and other law enforcement agencies has pleaded guilty to trafficking and conspiracy, according to Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III’s office.

Maria Carrion, 46, pled guilty in Fall River Superior Court Friday, March 24. She was one of the organization’s distributors and runners, the district attorney’s office reported. 

 Carrion was sentenced by Judge Raffi Yessayan to serve four to six-and-a-half years in state prison, to be followed by two years of supervised probation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Steve Butts, who also coordinated the investigation, dubbed “Operation Ghost.”

The trafficking charge relates to an April 30, 2019 execution of a search warrant at her home. Investigators seized 367 grams of fentanyl mixed with heroin, along with digital scales, cutting agents and other items associated with the packaging of fentanyl for distribution, the district attorney’s office reported.

 In June 2018, a Dartmouth Police Department detective and a Massachusetts State Police Trooper from Quinn’s State Police Drug Unit developed credible information that Orlando Badillo was operating a large-scale fentanyl drug trafficking organization throughout the greater New Bedford area, Quinn’s office reported. Carrion was involved in that organization, Quinn’s office reported.

“This defendant was part of the drug organization that sold large amounts of fentanyl in the greater New Bedford area. The defendant and others profited from the distribution of Fentanyl, Heroin and other narcotics to drug users in our communities,” Quinn said. “The defendant has a prior drug dealing conviction, and I am pleased she was held accountable for her role in distributing fentanyl as part of this organization.”